July 18, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Volunteer SHIP Counselors Needed to Help Medicare Beneficiaries

(Courtesy of JFS of MetroWest) The State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) provides free help to Essex County Medicare beneficiaries who have problems with, or questions about, their health insurance. SHIP is a statewide program administered in Essex County by Jewish Family Service of MetroWest NJ (JFS) and RSVP. It is funded by the New Jersey Department of Human Services with financial assistance through a grant from the U.S. Administration for Community Living.

Medicare can be complex and hard to navigate. Volunteer SHIP counselors are trained to assist people with Medicare questions including providing information on Medigap plans, Part D coverage, claims and benefits. Volunteers also answer questions regarding Medicaid and low-income assistance programs. Our main office is in Florham Park, however, volunteers counsel at community sites such as libraries and community centers throughout the county. In-person events are also held throughout the county during Medicare Open Enrollment (October 15-December 7). During the pandemic, we are providing services virtually via phone and Zoom.

Volunteer counselors do not provide legal advice, sell, recommend and/or endorse any specific insurance product, agent, insurance company or plan. Volunteers cannot hold an active license to sell insurance.

This program has two openings. We are especially in need of volunteers who are fluent in Spanish. A 40-hour virtual training is required with a minimum of four hours per week for a one-year commitment. The next training will be held virtually in March on Wednesdays/Fridays from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. via Zoom.

To volunteer, contact Brittany Bynum at [email protected] or 973-637-1717. The Essex County SHIP is run through RSVP, an AmeriCorps Seniors program, and only open to volunteers ages 55+ and willing to submit to a background check.

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